Review: Hard Time by Cara McKenna

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Amazon Goodreads


Goodreads Synopsis:

In this all-new novel from the author of Unbound, a woman with a rocky past finds romance in the last place she’d ever expect…

Annie Goodhouse doesn’t need to be warned about bad boys; good sense and an abusive ex have given her plenty of reasons to play it safe. But when she steps into her new role as outreach librarian for Cousins Correctional Facility, no amount of good sense can keep her mind—or eyes—off inmate Eric Collier. 

Eric doesn’t claim to be innocent of the crime that landed him in prison. In fact, he’d do it again if that’s what it took to keep his family safe. Loyalty and force are what he knows. But meeting Annie makes him want to know more. 

When Eric begins courting Annie through letters, they embark on a reckless, secret romance—a forbidden fantasy that neither imagines could ever be real…until early parole for Eric changes everything, and forces them both to face a past they can’t forget, and a desire they can’t deny.

My Review:

This is such a sweet and romantic story – not what you would think you would get from a book where the guy is in prison. And for a lot of readers, I’m sure the prison aspect is a turnoff, or at least causes some hesitation about reading. PLEASE don’t let that stop you from picking up this gem. I had never read anything by this author, but was intrigued by the story. And after seeing some really wonderful reviews, I had to give it a try. Imagine my excitement when I was approved for it on Netgalley!

And what a unique, romantic, erotic and just beautiful story this was! I was pulled in by the first page and didn’t want to put it down. The writing was incredible and the chemistry between Annie and Eric was off the charts.

Annie is a sweet librarian who’s moved to a new state to start over her life, after a really bad experience with her ex boyfriend. Her job as a librarian has many hats and one of her new ones is to spend Fridays at Cousin’s Correctional Facility, reading and helping some of the good behavior inmates.

Eric, one of the inmates, has been in for 5 years, but he’s not a bad guy (I know…he’s in prison…but keep an open mind). He made a poor decision to get him there and he’s learning from his mistakes and trying to be a better man.

The first time Annie spots Eric, she’s immediately attracted to him and confused by it. She shouldn’t be attracted to a criminal – but her heart wants what it wants. Eric needs some help with his writing and approaches Annie to help him. Thus starts a string of romantic and sexy letters between them.

They carry on with this forbidden relationship until the reality of Eric’s future sets in. The possibility of Eric’s release is real and can they ever have a lasting relationship outside the walls of Cousin’s?

Eric – oh be still my heart! He was all kinds of swoony and romantic and down right SWEET. His heart blew me away and I just melted over him.

Annie was a sweet girl trying not to make a really dumb mistake by falling for the wrong guy, another guy that could hurt her severely. I understood her hesitation and trust issues.

This book was the best mixture of sweetness, romance, & erotica. I loved every single page and could have read their story forever because it just left me with a smile on my face. I immediately went and purchased Unbound by this author because this will not be the last time I read her books!

Thank you to Andrea at The Bookish Babe for highly recommending this book and author on her blog, or I would have never had it on my radar.

ARC kindly provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

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One thought on “Review: Hard Time by Cara McKenna

  1. Andrea @ The Bookish Babe says:

    *fist pump* I am so excited that you loved Hard Time! Cara McKenna is such a fantastic author, and I just knew she could win me over with this story. I generally don’t want a convict hero, but she did a great job with him. Which, she usually has kind of “odd” heroes and I always love them.
    I can’t wait to see what you think of Unbound. Rob Rush is very surprising!

    Great review, Brandie!

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